A slump in Southeast Asian exports amid a worsening US-China trade war is having a knock-on effect on imports.
Given the high import content of manufactured goods, purchases from abroad have slid along with the plunge in exports from four emerging Southeast Asian economies and South Korea. That in turn will cut investment and growth in those countries, Reza Siregar and Yuanliu Hu, economists at the Institute of International Finance, said in a research note.
The hardest-hit will be South Korea and Thailand, where capital imports have dropped the most. Growth in those economies is seen weakening this year to 2.1 per cent and 3.4 per cent respectively, the economists said.